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Two Top Signal Callers Believe They Can Be Franchise QBs

INDIANAPOLIS – One team’s trash is another team’s franchise midfielder.

Pittsburgh’s Kenny Pickett and Malik Willis of Liberty – the headliner on the quarterback’s draft list has been deemed the worst to enter the league since 2013 – said Wednesday at the NFL Scouting Combine that he thinks he should be the one to pass. The first was selected on April 28.

“Someone will always think you’re trash,” says Willis. “I will keep going. I don’t play because of their approval”.

Possible destinations for Pickett, Willis and other rookies won’t be known until the pieces fall on the veteran midfield market: Is Aaron Rodgers looking for a deal? Will Russell Wilson or Kyler Murray be present? Where did Carson Wentz and Jimmy Garoppolo land?

As the dust settled, teams moving to the draft had to decide how to weigh Pickett’s readiness against Willis’ high ceiling. Or Pickett’s precision versus Willis’s dynamism. Or, in a separate way, Monster Pickett’s final season compared to his previous years.

“I think knowing how to win is key. It’s the number 1 thing at this location,” said Pickett. “And all my hard work over the years culminated in the previous season. It’s not an overnight thing. I didn’t wake up and all of that fell on my lap. Those were the years of working hard with my teammates and coaches.”

Malik Willis and Kenny Pickett
Malik Willis and Kenny Pickett
AP (2)

After throwing 38 touchdowns and 24 interceptions in 35 career games, the 23-year-old Ocean Township, NJ native has exploded with 42 touchdowns and dropped his total interceptions. seven of 13 games left on his way to being a Heisman Trophy finalist.

“I always said I would do it. I was confident that I would be here on this stage one way or another,” said Pickett. “My path is not three years. I had to do it for five years. Many people think I’ve been in college for six years. Everyone’s journey is different. I had faith from day one. ”

Willis’ journey included a move from Auburn to Liberty, where he ran 1,822 yards and 27 touchdowns over two seasons with a record of 48 touchdowns with 18 interceptions. What makes him the best quarterback in the draft?

Willis, 22, says: “I just thought it was my willingness to learn. “I am willing to strive to be great and the physical tools I have been given. And my work ethic. I think [I should be the first quarterback picked], but I don’t make those decisions. I hate that for me. ”

Multiple league sources like Pickett’s pairing with the Broncos in 9th place – if reuniting Rodgers with head coach (and former Packers offensive coordinator) Nathaniel Hackett doesn’t materialize – and Willis with the Steelers about the barter from Zero 20. The Commander at number 11 is a wild card.

“Pickett is a proven winner who’s been a good starter for a long time, so he should be ahead,” one NFL talent evaluator told The Post. The NFL told The Post, “but some teams may love Willis traits.”

Other sources suspect that the cold-weather-based Broncos could be turned off by Pickett’s small hand – to be measured for the first time on Thursday – and fear a grip on the NFL-sized ball. No first-round quarterback has had a hand less than 9 inches from thumb to pinky since the combo started measuring. Pickett admits he does exercises designed to extend his hands.

“There’s not a lot of talk about that in all of the formal and informal interviews I’ve had this week,” Pickett said. “Whatever it measures, it measures. I’m sure it won’t be the last time [the talk], but that will be the last measurement I take. Your tape is your resume. All these other things are boxes you have to check before you have a draft. “

Broncos’ Hackett is a West Coast-based offensive sect, and Pickett expressed a love for that system. Willis, who will be participating in drills but not running the 40-yard dash, has a preference for a simpler attack that is easy to understand.

“One of the points,” he said.

https://nypost.com/2022/03/02/nfl-combine-top-two-signal-callers-believe-they-can-be-franchise-qbs/ Two Top Signal Callers Believe They Can Be Franchise QBs

JOE HERNANDEZ

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